Patterns of Facilitation in Online Communities of Practice

Patterns of Facilitation in Online Communities of Practice

Halbana Tarmizi (Abu Dhabi University, UAE) and Gert-Jan de Vreede (University of Nebraska at Omaha, USA)
Copyright: © 2010 |Pages: 12
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-958-8.ch010


Communities of practice have gained foothold in knowledge management initiatives. Still, there are challenges for COP to thrive and to serve its purpose. Facilitation can help COP in overcoming some of the challenges. However, facilitation in COP by itself is challenging as we are dealing with different types of COP that exhibit different characteristics. Through content analysis of facilitators’ postings the authors identified several tasks commonly performed by facilitators from different COPs. Knowing how to accomplish those tasks will help COP facilitators in assisting their communities to thrive.
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Communities Of Practice And Participation

At the same time, a COP can suffer from lack of participation among its members. Several studies have identified challenges related to active participation in COPs, e.g., Ardichvili et al. (2003), Gray (2004), and Wasko and Faraj (2000). Therefore, member participation can not be taken for granted. It is obvious that an effort is needed to create a functioning COP.

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